Bonne Fêta | a cheesy birthday party

28 Feb


This past weekend our friends hosted a cheese-themed dinner party.* Attendees were tasked with making a dish for one of the six courses, with the only rule being that one of the main ingredients must be cheese. Did I mention most of us were from Wisconsin? It was an exciting meal. Also exciting was the abundance of cheese puns in the pre-party email chain.

Here’s a breakdown of the dishes, all of which were delicious.


Spinachoke bites made by Rebecca and Paul.

Brie, apple and pecan crostinis made by Keith and Alex.


Cheese Course:

Manchego and gruyère, along with a divine creme fraiche, strawberries and toffee dip combo (not pictured) made by Elizabeth and DJ.


Salad & Bread Course:

Micro greens with goat cheese, and spicy candied pecans and Cheddar Bay biscuits made by Alex and Seth.

First (Pasta) Course:

Sweet Potato Gnocchi Mac & Blue Cheese made by Tyler and me. Winner of the “Most Inventive Use of Cheese” award.


Thoughts/notes on the dish: We tripled the recipe to feed the crowd and ended up with a ton of sauce. Not that I’m complaining—I could eat the stuff with a spoon. I also think we were juuust under triple the amount of sweet potato, so we had to take out a bunch of sauce to keep it from being too soupy. Overall, the dish was just ok to me. While I loved the sauce, the gnocchi recipe was just too cinnamon-y for my taste (I’m not a fan of cinnamon). However, it did get better the next day (thinking a dish is just ok does not stop me from gorging on it a second time, apparently.)

Second (Meat) Course:

Tenderloin of Beef stuffed with Spinach, Leeks, and Goat Cheese + Red Wine Sauce with Mashed Potatoes with Garlic, Mascarpone, and Caramelized Leeks made by Libby and John. Winner of best overall dish and star of my  daydreams for the past week.



Brie & Jam-stuffed Puff Pastries made by Gina and Ryan.

Deep Dark Chocolate Cheesecake made by Steph, which also served as Libby’s birthday cake. This was my other vote for best dish. Delightfully decadent.



Overall, I’d say it was a Grade AA party.

*Idea for party inspired by Vicky’s friends’ annual party.


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